Starting your day off on a healthy note is absolutely essential—and there’s no better place to start than with breakfast. Not only can the first meal of the day give you the energy you need to jumpstart your day, but a healthy breakfast can even help with other things like weight loss and anti-aging. That’s right—the way you start your morning can even play a role in making you look younger. When it comes to where to start or what to make, there are so many different breakfast options we love, but one of our most favorites is oatmeal. But what would be considered the healthiest way to eat oatmeal?
When we say the positives are nearly endless when it comes to starting your day with a bowl of oatmeal—we’re not kidding. Oatmeal is packed with important nutrients and high in fiber. Not to mention, it can also help lower your cholesterol and is free of added sugars (if you’re starting off with a plain bowl of oats). No matter if you’re feeling something sweet or savory, you can use oatmeal as the breakfast base for all your flavor hopes and dreams.
But, before you think that oatmeal can do no wrong, there are definitely some unhealthy ways to taint this ideal breakfast option. So, in order to prevent that we spoke with Mackenzie Burgess, RDN, registered dietitian nutritionist and recipe developer at Cheerful Choices to find out the healthiest way to eat oatmeal. Here’s what she recommends, and for even more healthy tips, be sure to check out our list of The 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now.
Pump up the protein
Even though oatmeal has all those great nutritional benefits, it falls a bit flat in the protein department.
“According to the USDA, one cup of cooked oatmeal made with water has 6 grams of protein,” says Burgess. “A good goal is around 15 to 20 grams of protein for breakfast.” Starting your day off with more protein can ensure that you stay fuller for longer, which is an essential quality in a good breakfast if you ask us.
If you’re not really sure how to incorporate more protein into your oatmeal, Burgess has some suggestions.
Nut butter or protein powder can also be great sources of flavor for the oatmeal, while Greek yogurt can make the oats super creamy. Packing your breakfast bowl with a little added protein is by far the healthiest way to eat oatmeal, and takes our favorite breakfast option to a whole new level.